Barry Keoghan Was Diagnosed With Flesh-Eating Disease Before Filming The Movie That Got Him An Oscar Nomination

Here’s a fun trivia question for your friends: name the Academy Award nominee who nearly died from flesh-eating disease? If someone guesses Barry Keoghan, it’s probably because they saw the answer in the headline of this blog. That friend is a dirty cheat.

GQ spoke to the Saltburn actor (who was up for Best Supporting Actor at the Oscars for his sweetly tragic performance in last year’s The Banshees of Inisherin) among many things, including “flirting” with co-star Jacob Elordi. “We were constantly close,” he said. “It ain’t just for the cameras and the premiere[s]. Me and Jacob — he’s like a brother to me, honestly. I think when you’re comfortable with someone, you can be as close as you want, you know what I mean? It’s not like, ‘Oh, don’t come near me.’ It’s like, I’m comfortable. When I’m comfortable around people, I’m comfy.”

The profile also reveals that Keoghan nearly died from flesh-eating disease.

Keoghan peels off his shirt, revealing a slightly pale, compactly muscled chest and the gnarly scar tissue that winds its way up his arm like a snake tattoo. A souvenir from a case of necrotizing fasciitis, a.k.a. flesh-eating disease, he caught a few years ago, right before The Banshees of Inisherin started shooting. One in five cases are fatal; amputation, he says, was on the table. He remembers saying to the doctors, “But I’m not gonna die, right?” and the doctors saying, “Well, we don’t know.”

Martin McDonagh, who directed Keoghan on The Banshees of Inisherin, said, “He seemed to shrug it off. We were only about four days out from shooting, and his arm was puffed up. But he was like, ‘Yeah, no, I’m going to be fine — I’ll see you on Tuesday.’ I went to the hospital thinking, sh*t, is he going to die? Let alone, is he going to make the movie. But I came out of there energized and looking forward to it.”

Look, if I survived being diagnosed with something informally known as “flesh-eating disease,” I would live every day like it was my last. Which explains the grave humping.

(Via GQ)